Good News from A Great City Haverhill, MA
They say spring is the time of love, but since spring seems such a remote possibility here in Haverhill where within a two-week period we’ve had 3 maybe 4 snow storms, we have to find our inspirations for love elsewhere. Is it possible even in the icy grasp of winter that Haverhill is for lovers?
That’s when The Heartbeat of Haverhill started thinking. Does anyone remember a song called “Love Potion #9”? In one version of the song THOH remembers lyrics suggesting the possibility of Love Potion #10. And after dinner last night, we’re pretty sure it is among the many cool things made here in Haverhill. But for the #10 potion we didn’t have to head to 34th and Vine, and the potion is delicious, not in the least like the turpentine/india ink mixed up in the sink concoction of the song. NOTE: There’s a link at the end of this post if you want to hear the song.
In Haverhill we find renewed and new love with every leisurely jaunt to Keon’s Bistro on 105 Washington Street. And once a month guests can ramp up the dosage with the monthly 5-course wine pairing dinner. For the February wine dinner we sat next to a newly engaged couple, amid a few couples married 20 years or more and everyone left a little more in love with their dinner companion than they were when they walked in (even if it’s just a friendly love). We saw a couple of discreet kisses, the sharing of food and hand holding inside and out though outside it was more glove on glove. We left the restaurant with big love for the staff (Thank you Michelle and Netty and Owner Alan Boisvert). We made new friends with the people sitting at the next table, shared more love and laughs with older friends at the bar. We loved the food – loved the chef for substituting a magnificent stuffed Portobello for a dish we couldn’t eat. (Could the newly created mushroom dish be named “the Heartbeat of Haverhill Magic Mushroom” and kept on the menu after the wine dinner?) We loved the perfectly cooked sirloin on the savory potato gallette, the pan seared scallop so sweet briny and tender atop bacon, toasted corn and brussel sprout. We loved the chocolate walnut bread pudding with maple cream anglaise though I would have sworn going in I didn’t like bread pudding.
Owner Alan Boisvert says love isn’t limited to the wine dinner, it’s just that Keon’s is skilled at pairing the perfect wine and sumptuous foods, creating ambience with twinkling candlelight, finding staff who intuitively know whether you’re looking to chat about food, wine, or Haverhill or just want the sense you are alone in the world for magical evening with the significant other who might have felt less significant during the mostly chaotic and stressful weeks we typically experience.
And we’d have to agree – we save Keon’s for date night (no kids!) but others visit with clusters of friends, still others arrive solo knowing they’ll make a friend during their visit. And a visit can mean anything from a quick appetizer or dessert outside on the patio on a warm summer night, a single cocktail at the bar (this is a place where you can trust your bartender to make a suggestion for wine or cocktail based on your personal tastes), or a full meal with one of the restaurants affordable specials (dinner for two with a bottle of wine or shaker of martinis is $59 Monday-Thursday, and we’ve noticed very reasonably priced 3-course wine week dinners cropping up regularly that span an entire week. )
Looking for love? Love the people, the food, the ambience at the next five-course wine dinner. It will be on Sunday, March 16th, 2014 at 6pm. Reservations sell out quickly. My husband will be working Sunday nights for the next 3 months so we won’t be able to attend but he graciously suggested “Why don’t you come back with your mother or a friend” to which THOH replied – “Nope – it could never be the same without you. We’ll just come during the next wine week and visit mid-week instead.”
Keon’s 105 Bistro- what’s not to love!
105 Washington Street • Haverhill, MA
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LINK TO THE CLOVERS SINGING LOVE POTION #9: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfallLiaIaQ
©2014 by Alison Colby-Campbell